Five tips to get bidding for government tenders

By Kate Burrows, Managing Director Tender Training College

The opportunity for small business to grow through government tendering is expanding with a 30% increase in the value of Federal Government contracts awarded to SMEs in the last financial year.

More than 9,000 different SMEs won almost 39,000 of the 73,000 Federal Government awarded contracts in 2017-18. These contracts were valued at nearly $13 billion, representing an increase from $9.95 billion in 2016-2017.

Government represents an attractive client for SMEs to grow their business, with procurement policies in place to pay on time, simplify tender documentation and targets to ensure small business participation is increased.

There are a wide range of Federal Government contracts available across Australia, not to mention those tenders issued at a state and local government level so it really is an opportunity not to be missed for small business.

However, government tendering is overseen by compliance and formal procedures that small business professionals need to understand before they begin bidding.

Tendering can be time consuming and costly, so it is important that small business is familiar with the framework and rules of government procurement so that they can deliver a compliant, client-focused and compelling tender response.

Five tips for SMEs to get started in government tendering include:

1. Search local council and State and Federal governments tender opportunities to see what contracts are available and relevant to your business – most government tenders are released through electronic portals at no charge

2. Develop a process for responding to tenders, including a program for gathering quotes and information, and developing your response to ensure you meet the tender deadline

3. Government like low risk suppliers – make sure you can demonstrate a sound track record in contract delivery and performance, with strong client and project references

4. Government tenders are assessed on value for money – identify your company’s differentiators so you can show how you will deliver value along with a competitive price

5. Develop a thorough understanding of the contract requirements in the bid phase to be compliant in your response and certain your company can deliver upon these if you win.

If you are an SME and new to tendering, join me at the half-day Secrets to Winning Tenders workshop in Sydney on 21 November: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/secrets-to-winning-tenders-tickets-73772923801 as I share the key steps and practical tips to get started in government tendering.

I am the Founder of the Tender Training College. I was inspired to start the Tender Training College to help businesses and professionals secure their futures by providing quality tender training courses.

Author: Kate Burrows

Kate Burrows is founder and Managing Director of the Tender Training College. She is passionate about helping people to improve their tendering skills and to secure their futures. Kate has more than 15 years experience in tendering, and has helped clients win more than $25 billion in new business.